CHANNEL 2 SPORTS ZONE FRIDAY GAME OF THE WEEK: FAYETTE CO. AT SANDY CREEK
Alex Chisum never made a big deal out of this whole recruiting thing. He never focused on who wasn’t pursuing him. He put all his time and energy in who was and what those that did had to offer.
Armed with that information, Sandy Creek’s 6-foot-2, 185-pound wide receiver committed to Cincinnati last April. And he hasn’t looked back
“They actually noticed me as a sophomore,” Chisum said of coach Butch Jones and his staff. “They invited me up there a couple of times and showed me a lot of love. Coach told me right away they needed me bad and wanted me to come in and play as a freshman. He told me where they wanted to play me and what they wanted to do with me. That was big.”
The Bearcats’ gain is the loss of everybody else, says Sandy Creek’s Chip Walker. The Fighting Patriots’ head coach doesn’t mince words when it comes to his star wide receiver.
“The best receiver in the state of Georgia, period,” Walker said. “He’ll do whatever you want him to do. He’s 6-2. He goes up and gets the ball. He has the speed to get behind you. He’ll block. They don’t come any better.”
When it comes to wide receivers, Walker speaks from a perch of authority. He coached former Georgia Tech and current Detroit Lions’ star Calvin Johnson at Sandy Creek.
Just last week, Chisum broke Johnson’s Sandy Creek record for career receiving yards during a three-touchdown performance against Spalding. He now has 96 catches for 1,656 yards.
It was fitting that Johnson himself was there to witness it. He came home to Tyrone to have his No. 81 jersey retired.
“Yeah, I got to meet him and talk to him a little bit,” Chisum said of Johnson. “It was cool. He was giving me a hard time for breaking his records.”
Chisum, who has 32 catches for 705 yards and six touchdowns this season, needs six more TDs to run down Johnson’s record for receiving scores. And the way Sandy Creek is playing, he just might get it.
The Patriots (8-0), the 2009 Class AAAA state champions, are currently undefeated and ranked No. 2 in Class AAA after dropping down a classification this season. Tonight, their talents will be on display against Fayette County (1-7) in the “Channel 2 Sports Zone Friday Game of the Week.” The contest will be broadcast live at 7:30 p.m. on RTV (Comcast 248/Charter 126) and replayed at 1 a.m. on WSB, Channel 2.
Meanwhile, Chisum’s recruitment is beginning to heat up again. Walker has long said that Georgia, Georgia Tech and the whole of the ACC and SEC were missing out this special offensive athlete. Now all those teams are starting to hover around.
Chisum is already holding offers from Kentucky and Mississippi State, along with Indiana, Louisville and Southern Miss. But now Alabama, Auburn, Georgia and South Carolina are starting to show interest. Just this week the home state Bulldogs called Walker to ask about Chisum and request some video.
The attention is piquing Chisum’s interest.
“I want to stay open and not rule anything out,” Chisum said. “But it’s not something I’m really thinking about. Unless somebody steps up with an actual offer, I plan on sticking with Cincinnati.”
Chisum was particularly intrigued by Georgia’s sudden interest.
“I was surprised,” he said. “Coach Walker told me they have a tendency to offer late. They were actually the first school I looked at. I went to the Mark Richt Camp the summer between my sophomore and junior years. But nothing really came from it and I haven’t been back.”
The idea of playing in the SEC is one that appeals to Chisum. He was tempted to go with Kentucky before committing to the Bearcats.
“I heavily considered them,” he said. “Joker Phillips came down and offered me in person as the head coach-in-waiting, so that was a pretty big deal.”
Asked what it is that sets him apart as a wide receiver, Chisum said: “My route-running is what everybody says sets me apart. I use my size and my ability to get open. I like to go get the ball. I was more of a possession receiver last year. This year I’m trying to be more of a play-maker.”
As Sandy Creek’s opponents might say, “mission accomplished.”